The question of when to offer Blooms and Brews in 2021 has at least been answered. It won’t be.
“I received notification that Blooms and Brews, sadly, will not happen this year,” said Christy Ross, during Monday’s Tourism Development Board meeting. “I’m bummed out about that.”
Tourism Board member Keval Sheth, an event organizer, says beer is also on the list of the shortages caused by the pandemic.
“Normally, we would offer it in September,” Sheth said. “With the pandemic still wreaking havoc on the distribution of beer, and all kinds of stuff, it’s hard to get a lot of those kegs in right now. With restaurants opening up, they are actually focusing more on getting kegs back into restaurants rather than to a lot of these events.”
It’s better to cancel the event now rather than schedule one, sell tickets and have a lack of beer on the day of the event, Sheth noted.
“That’s what happened at the Knoxville Beer Fest,” said Sheth. “They were supposed to have, I think, 120 beer vendors, but only 84 showed up. If we are supposed to have 20 here and only 9 show up, people will notice. When you’re supposed to have 120 and still have 80 to choose from, it’s less noticeable.”
Sheth said consideration was given to “scaling it down a little” and offering VIP tickets only to reduce the number of people. However, that idea was quickly quashed due to not wanting to change the atmosphere to a “higher end” event that only a select few could afford.
Blooms and Brews is a craft beer festival sponsored by Tree City Wine & Spirits. It’s first couple years, it’s been held the last Saturday in September at the Farmers Market. However, Junior Auxiliary of McMinnville selected Sept. 25 for its wine tasting and art exhibit called Sip & Saveur, from 6 to 9 p.m. in downtown McMinnville. JA members pushed the date from April to September to allow more time for the pandemic to subside.
Sheth said offering the beer festival in August was a consideration, but that also was dismissed.
“We wanted to do it in August, but in September you’ve got Sip & Saveur. Again, thinking about everyone. Not everyone has disposable income to go to events like these. We felt like we needed to put some distance between the two events. We were planning to speak with JA and propose that they keep the fall and we move Blooms and Brews, which kind of fits into our theme. That keeps the events separated and six months apart.”
A date for a spring Blooms and Brews has not been set.